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Chameleon


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Chameleon
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Audio CD, March 25, 2008
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Chameleon + Chicken & Egg + Fiddler's Green
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 25, 2008)
  • Original Release Date: 2008
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Proper American
  • ASIN: B0013D8JQK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #288,566 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Where's Love Come From
2. Hoss Race
3. The Garden
4. Red Dog In The Morning
5. Phantom Phone Call
6. Megna's
7. Chameleon
8. Father Forgive Me
9. The Only Way To Never Hurt
10. Get Out There And Dance
11. This World Was Made For Everyone
12. When In Rome
13. World Of Trouble
14. Safe In Your Arms
15. Crooked Road
16. Nothing To Say

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

IBMA and Grammy Award winner Tim O'Brien is a singer of unusual clarity and originality, a self-taught multi-instrumentalist of rare ability, and an incisive songwriter who has made a lasting mark on Americana music. O'Brien's contemporary original Folk offering entitled Chameleon, is his first since the simultaneous release of Cornbread Nation and Fiddler's Green (2006), the latter of which won him a Grammy for Best Traditional Folk Album. Proper American. 2008.

Review

"...O'Brien plays the hell out of them....and the material...confounds expectations in charming fashion. -- Ed Hurt -- No Depression Magazine - March/April 08

Customer Reviews

This guy can really put words together.
Lawrence A. Schenbeck
Tim's voice is able to convey all the subtle nuances of the lyrics; and he sings with a type of heartfelt passion that I rarely hear and enjoy.
Matthew G. Sherwin
This is a keeper, and one listen will make you wish to collect all of his albums.
Patrick McCormack

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Matthew G. Sherwin HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 2, 2008
Format: Audio CD Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Tim O'Brien is back with yet another terrific album that is definitely one for the books! Tim's voice is able to convey all the subtle nuances of the lyrics; and he sings with a type of heartfelt passion that I rarely hear and enjoy. Chameleon is a strong album featuring Tim with several different types of guitars and similar instruments; and every single song is really quite memorable.

"Where's Love Come From" explores how loving relationships come and go; Tim sings passionately of how love can go and go because of the very human feelings that we all inevitably experience. Tim's guitar playing is flawless, too--it's all THAT good. In addition, "Hoss Race" has an excellent beat; this catchy melody is very well written. However, an even better song comes with "The Garden;" this tender love song moves me every time I hear it and it tugs at my heartstrings quite a bit. Tim delivers "The Garden" with panache and this impresses me greatly.

"Megna's" features Tim reminiscing about a man named Mr. Megna who peddled vegetables and other foods from his truck. Tim sings this brilliantly with a folksy style that is very pleasing to the ear! Tim's mandola playing enhances the natural beauty of this fine number. Tim is also very able to project his voice as he mimics the way Mr. Megna would cry out to the neighborhood what he had for sale that day. "The Only Way To Never Hurt" is a song that has Tim lamenting a love gone awry; he wants to run away and hide because his heart aches so badly. "The Only Way To Never Hurt" is "to never love at all;" this message is true but love is worth the potential pain a person can feel. Tim does hold out hope that "someday (he) will love again," great!
Read more ›
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By John C. Graham on March 28, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I had the pleasure of seeing Tim O'brien's solo performance a few years back at a wonderful little venue called Hugh's Room in Toronto. It was shortly after 'Traveler' was released and many of the tunes played that evening were from the album. Fiddle, bazouki, mandolin and guitar were all played with masterful precision and Tim's vocals were absolutely beautiful and pitch perfect. It was an unforgettable evening and easily the best show of this kind that I have ever seen.

Needless to say, I've been waiting for an album like this from Tim. It's like a postcard from an old friend. It's personal. It brings out the emotions like nothing else can. 'Chameleon' is a collection of new Tim O'brien tunes played by just Tim with his arsenal of instruments...including, for the first time ever, a banjo!! and it's pure magic from beginning to end.

Tim O'brien is offering us another example of his very special talents. His uncanny ability to reach a part of us all, through his music, is shared by only a few. Recordings such as 'Chameleon', that are brimming with the essence of humanity, are very rare in today's world. This is a disc to own and play often, through the best and worst of times. It's one to cherish.

Update: Great to see so many listeners offering their comments and opinions here. Chameleon still gets my nod for excellence.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By R S Cobblestone VINE VOICE on April 26, 2008
Format: Audio CD Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Tim O'Brien features his range of talents with stringed instruments in this crisp CD, Chameleon. In fact, it is the extraordinary mix of vocal and instrumental styles that truly makes this collection a "chameleon". Tim O'Brien is not a "one size fits all" singer and instrumentalist.

As you listen to this album, you will be struck with mental flashes of other accomplished musical artists: Gordon Lightfoot, Ricky Skaggs, Steven Fromholz, and even some Hawaiiana.

If you are not sure whether you are a fan of America folk, start with Chameleon.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Learning All The Time on May 13, 2008
Format: Audio CD Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I really enjoyed this CD, and have listened to it repeatedly. The songs on Chameleon are in the style of folk and traditional country music, and O'Brien sings his songs in a warm, casual voice with just the right amount of authentic twang. Chameleon helps me unwind and puts me in a good mood, with its upbeat (and amazing) fiddling and fingerpicking. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michael Birman TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 15, 2008
Format: Audio CD Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Authentic Bluegrass music, a uniquely American folk-art form that has its origins in the great Scots-Irish migration into the hills and hollers of 17th and 18th century frontier America, owes much to its Elizabethan British and Irish roots. Beautiful, often haunting melodies, lyrics that are really folk poetry filled with a mournful vision of the transitory nature of life (an Elizabethan obsession), and an instrumental brilliance that echoes the great lute players of the era such as John Dowland. Lovers of this music may balk initially at the hybrid mixture that Tim O'Brien has created. But listening to this CD a few times should overcome any qualms.

As if this were a classical album recorded using "authentic" or "original" instruments, O'Brien carefully lists a wide range of old and very rare string instruments that he uses. As a guitarist, I am jealous of some of them. His technique is good, though he is not a virtuoso. His guitar finger-picking is strong, as is his banjo picking. O'Brien succumbs to an urge for esoterica by playing the bouzouki: he seems slightly stiff and a bit of a novice on the instrument, but the attempt is valiant. His fiddle playing is good, but not flashy, as is his mandolin playing. With a fine song writing gift to match his instrumental skills, the compositions on Chameleon eventually grab you. But it's his relentless "authenticity" that really makes this album as good as it is. Bluegrass and Folk filtered through a unique personal vision makes this CD easy to recommend to those amenable to America's great native music.
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